Katharine H. Putnam Fellowship in Plant Science 2024: Applications for the Katharine H. Putnam Fellowship in Plant Science 2024 are open now. The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University invites applicants for research fellowships in plant science.

Katharine H. Putnam Fellowship in Plant Science 2024
Katharine H. Putnam Fellowship in Plant Science 2024

Putnam Fellowships offer excellent opportunities for advanced research and study using the Arboretum’s living collections of woody plants and research facilities.

Katharine H. Putnam Fellowship in Plant Science 2024 ($83,000 salary)

Putnam Fellows conduct basic and applied research in the plant sciences. Scientists with a Ph.D. who have identified an independent research project that would utilize the Arboretum’s living collections are encouraged to apply.

Putnam Fellows conduct basic and applied research in the plant sciences. The goal of the program is to facilitate the research use of the Arboretum’s living collections, thereby stimulating their use within the larger scientific community.

The research topics of past Putnam Fellows have included evolutionary biology, taxonomy and systematics, molecular and developmental biology, physiology ecology, propagation, and plant-insect and/or pathogen interactions. The Putnam fellowship program has attracted a diverse array of scholars, and many have gone on to be leaders in academia and public horticulture.

The Arnold Arboretum provides exceptional resources for woody plant research. The living collection, numbering more than 15,000 plants in over 2,200 species, is distinguished as one of the most thoroughly documented collections of temperate woody plants in the world. Taxonomic diversity and breadth within the collection are noteworthy, and the floras of China, Japan, and Korea are particularly well represented.

Fellowship for Katharine H. Putnam Fellowship in Plant Science 2024

  • Putnam fellows are expected to publish the results of their research in professional or academic journals and present their work at professional meetings and workshops. Putnam Fellows are also expected to engage fully in the Arboretum community. While the primary work of Putnam Fellows is conducting original independent research that utilizes the living collections of the Arboretum, Putnam Fellows are also expected to work collaboratively with the staff of the Arboretum on institutional efforts for education and outreach, for example, participating as instructors for Arnold Arboretum education programs or writing for Arnoldia, the Arboretum’s quarterly magazine.
  • Putnam fellows are full-time employees of Harvard University with a salary of $83,000 per year, employee health insurance eligibility, and annual support of up to $10,000 for research, travel, initial relocation, and other professional expenses. Putnam fellows are expected to be in full-time residence at the Arboretum during their 2-year tenure and are provided office and research space.


  • Applicants are sought from early-career individuals with a Ph.D. in plant biology, evolution, plant genetics, plant ecology, horticulture, or a related discipline.
  • Applicants must have their Ph.D. when they initiate their term at the Arboretum.
  • Applicants should be well-positioned to conduct original, independent research and publish their findings in peer-reviewed publications. They encourage applications from those underrepresented in the field.
  • Applicants are expected to be fluent in English.

The Putnam Fellowship is an independent post-doctoral position. As independent scholars, Putnam Fellows have access to shared laboratories, equipment, desk space, resources, and interactions with fellow scientists, students, and staff. It is not necessary to have a specific faculty host.

Applicants are encouraged to develop collaborations and work closely with any and all other members of the Arboretum and broader Harvard communities to refine and develop their projects.

Selection Criteria 

The selection of Putnam Fellows will be based on:

  • The applicant’s experience working independently as a researcher The planned project ought to be an autonomous field of study that goes beyond the applicant’s doctoral work.
  • The nature and scope of the work, the methodology and techniques to be used, the viability of the proposed effort in relation to the fellowship’s term, and how it would advance knowledge about the plant kingdom will all be taken into consideration when evaluating the overall quality of the applicant’s research proposal.
  • The importance of the research with respect to the living collections of the Arnold Arboretum The study proposal submitted by the applicant will also be evaluated in light of how the Arboretum’s living collections are used. The utilization of the Arboretum’s living collections and the project’s alignment with current activities will be evaluated in addition to the research plan submitted by the applicant.

Application for Katharine H. Putnam Fellowship in Plant Science 2024

The procedure of awarding fellowships involves a competitive assessment. Online applications must contain the following information in order to be eligible for an award:

  • Research statement: the statement should outline the proposed research project the applicant hopes to carry out as a Putnam Fellow and should not exceed four pages, single-spaced. The statement ought to delineate the character and extent of the suggested research endeavor, the methodology and techniques to be implemented, the way in which the living collections of the Arnold Arboretum would be applied, and the ways in which the project will propel the field of plant science forward. Although they should be provided, references do not count towards the allotted four pages.
  • Three reference letters: You need to use the “request” section of the online submission form to ask the referee to submit a letter of recommendation. An email containing a link to an online submission form where the referee can attach a letter of recommendation will be automatically delivered to them. It is strongly advised that you get in touch with your referee before submitting the request.                                                                   Please let the referees know that instructions for submitting a recommendation letter will be sent to them via email. By January 18, each referee must use this link to upload their letter of reference.
  • Research Budget: A small amount of money (up to $10,000 each year) is available for relocation to Boston, professional fees, travel, and research. Applicants should submit a one-page budget that is straightforward and includes a paragraph outlining all laboratory and equipment requirements, an itemized budget broken down by year for all travel, conferences, and research, as well as up to $2,500 for the cost of moving to Boston for the first time. What is needed for the proposed project should be appropriately reflected in the budget and justified.
  • A curriculum vitae

In conclusion, the Katharine H. Putnam Fellowship in Plant Science 2024 offers a generous salary of $83,000. This fellowship is a great opportunity for individuals with a passion for plant science to advance their careers and gain valuable experience in the field.

The fellowship provides financial support to conduct research and pursue academic excellence in plant science and related fields. It is a highly competitive fellowship, and the awardee is sure to be recognized as a promising and talented researcher in the field of plant science.


  • The deadline for receipt of applications is January 11, 2024.

Open this link for more details.


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